Sunday, June 21, 2015

Antoniazzo Romano in S. Maria della Consolazione.

Santa Maria della Consolazione is a church like many others in Rome. It hosts fine Mannerist and High Renaissance works. But what is really incredible about it is the presence of works by Antoniazzo Romano and his school, the greatest Roman artist in the Renaissance. This area is rich of churches with works by him or his school - but it is always good to find some Renaissance art in a city renowned for its Baroque art or Medieval mosaics.

This beautiful "Madonna with Child" (1465-70) which is located above the high altar is by Antoniazzo himself and it is very unique because it is a restoration of an older Medieval fresco. Antoniazzo learned this technique earlier when he was commissioned the restoration of early icons - such as the one in the nearby Greek church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin.


Interestingly, the vestry of the Church hosts some damaged frescoes representing the risen Christ and two saints. On the wall opposite the altar there is a small fresco of a Madonna with child (a very popular theme you might think!). The rest is unfortunately lost - but it is a wonderful testimony of what Rome hides and still has to offer. The altar and the architecture of the sacristy are also XV century and are rather fine.